Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Mar 19, 2013 (English Version)


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When Google Comes to Town

The expected visit to Burma by Google’s top executive, Eric Schmidt, comes amid disturbing signs of backsliding by the Burmese government on media reforms. Read More


Burma’s 88 Generation Students to Form Political Party

Leaders of Burma’s activist group 88 Generation Students said they would form a political party, although some in the group expressed doubts about the plan. Read More


Is Constitutional Review an Attempt to Bolster Shwe Mann’s Position?

Some suspect that a proposed plan to review Burma’s controversial Constitution is designed to further the ambitions of Lower House Speaker Shwe Mann. Read More


The Japanese Way to Peace in Burma

Yohei Sasakawa, the chairman of the Nippon Foundation, wants to improve the lot of Burma’s ethnic minorities. But his efforts are not without controversy. Read More


Villagers Accept Compensation, but Some Still Refuse

Burma’s state-run media reports that some Letpadaung villagers have accepted compensation, even as others continue to refuse to hand over their land willingly. Read More


Burma Parliament May Review Constitution

Lawmakers in Burma say Parliament may agree this week to establish a commission that would consider amending the country’s 2008 pro-military Constitution. Read More


Amid Tensions, Chinese Fruit a Turnoff in Vietnam

Fears about the safety of Chinese food products are often well founded, but in Vietnam they are tangled up with anti-Chinese sentiment. Read More


China Criticises US Anti-missile North Korea Plan

China said on Monday US plans to bolster missile defences in response to provocations by North Korea would only intensify antagonism. Read More


Burma Parliament Loosens Foreign Investment Rules

Burma’s Parliament on Monday passed additional regulations for the Foreign Direct Investment Law that will open up 20 percent of ownership in certain business sectors, Radio Free Asia reports. The FDI Law, which was approved in November, restricted or prohibited foreign investment in a range of sectors, such as agriculture, livestock, fisheries and manufacturing and [...] Read More


Burma Govt Bank Plans to Increase Loans to SMEs

The Burmese government’s SME Bank wants to increase its total capital to about US $40 million in order to expand its lending to small and medium enterprises, the bank’s advisor San Thein told The Irrawaddy. Speaking on the sidelines of a SME forum in Rangoon on Sunday, he said, “We are planning to run more [...] Read More


US Firm Wants to Invest $700Mln in Burma

New York-based private equity firm ACO Investment Group announced it wants to invest US $700 million in Burma, Bloomberg reports. Managing Partner Hari Achutan said the firm would aim to invest $200 million in Rangoon International Airport and made a $500-million bid for the two telecommunications licenses that Burma’s government put on offer in January. [...] Read More


Kerry Says He’s Committed to US Rebalance to Asia

Secretary of State John Kerry said on Monday he is as committed to US engagement with the Asia-Pacific as his predecessor. Kerry, who took office last month, moved to dispel doubts that he was less supportive of the Obama administration’s so-called “pivot” to Asia, initiated on the watch of former top diplomat Hillary Rodham Clinton. [...] Read More


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